2000-01-29 / Columnists

Simon Says….

by Lew M. Simon, Democratic District Leader, 23rd A.D. Part B

Sunday was a great day. Even with the threat of snow and more to follow and the brutal cold, over 400 people made the day special. It was the kickoff of the Hearts and Shamrocks annual dance to support the 2000 Queens County St. Patrick's Day Parade. This year being the first of the new millennium and the 25 anniversary of our parade, I was honored by being chosen honorary male grand marshal of the parade.

The male grand marshal is Jack Ahearn, president of Local 30 of the Operating Engineers. The female grand marshal is Rosemary Lombardi, who is vice president of the county board and an educator. Female honorary grand marshal is Dr. Geraldine Chapey, female Democratic district leader and a professor at Kingsborough Community College. Deputy grand marshal is Chris Bowles, owner of Blackwater Tavern and activist in Irish community causes and a good friend.

Other deputy grand marshals include Frank Dowd, a retired New York City police officer and former aide to Rep. Mario Biaggi. He is also a member of the New York City St. Patrick's Day Parade and provides security for Cardinal O'Connor. Mike McCarthy is a member of the Parade Committee representing Division 21 Ancient Order of Hibernians. Next is a woman who I love and reminds me of my mom. She is one of the sweetest and kindest women I know. Betty Daromdy hails from Woodside and supports all Irish heritage and cultural events.

Representing the Rockaway Rockies is a man who has done a great deal for our kids and community, Bill Flaherty. Bob Johnson, president of the Rugby Club, is a great neighbor and a supporter of Irish causes in Rockaway. D. Brian Heffernan organized the John F. Kennedy, jr. mass last summer at St. Francis.

Other deputy grand marshals include Bill Lavin, former CEO of Woolworth's, who supports all Irish causes, and Rosemary Sullivan, sr., mother of James Conway Sullivan, who is charming, sincere, and a diligent worker for all Irish causes. Last, but not least, is our illustrious City Councilman Al Stabile who is currently very sick. We wish him a speedy recovery and we wish him well.

We would also like to recognize a great friend, James DeLong, who is vice president of Tranportation Workers Local 100. James DeLong has attended numerous meetings of our Democratic club. He and a table of members from his union supported our parade. We want to recognize Emerald Society president, Jane P. Bragg, who is a Belle Harbor resident, as well as a member of our club.

Attending this gala function at my table were John McLoughlin, editor of The Wave, Jack Safos, John Hayes, John and Helene Flaherty, Ben and Mary Lenihan, Andy and Maureen McGee, Sara E. Berger, president of the Good Government Regular Democratic Club, and Oliver and Mary Rooney.

We are saddened by the loss of Mary Olsen, mother of my executive secretary, Linda Ruscillo. Mary was a wonderful mother, grandmother, aunt, mother-in-law and grandmother. We are so sorry for her loss. May God bless her and may she now rest in peace.

I am always available to help with community problems. We are at the Democratic club every Thursday night from 7:30-11 p.m. You don't have to be a member to drop in to discuss current affairs in our community. We are located at 112-20 Beach Channel drive opposite Waldbaum's.

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